Blizzard's new MMOG to be 'casual' - Analyst

Sterne Agee industry watcher says World of Warcraft maker's next online game will "likely" be out in 12-24 months.


Titan (Blizzard)

Blizzard Entertainment has done little to quell the mystery and intrigue surrounding its next massively multiplayer online gaming project, and the latest twist certainly isn't quieting the buzz. In a note to investors, Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia characterized the as-yet-unannounced game as a "casual" MMOG that should launch within the next 12 to 24 months.

Officially, Titan remains not much more than one of Saturn's moons.
Officially, Titan remains not much more than one of Saturn's moons.

"In addition, expansion packs for Starcraft and World of Warcraft, a new Diablo game, a new casual MMO, new properties from Bungie, etc. will likely be released in the next 12 to 24 months and alleviate investor concerns," Bhatia said.

Unfortunately, Bhatia offered no color on his comment, nor did he indicate what his characterization of the game is based off of. Neither Bhatia nor Blizzard had responded to GameSpot's request for comment as of press time.

Blizzard has previously said that the game will be a brand-new property and not a World of Warcraft clone. In February 2009, now-ex-World of Warcraft game director Jeff Kaplan began working full time on the project, which is code-named Titan. Also in 2009, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick said that the game, which is already playable, would have "a little more broad appeal."

Bhatia's comments came as part of an optimistic assessment of Activision Blizzard's position in the gaming market going forward. "We believe [Activision Blizzard]'s game portfolio will look much more diversified over the next 12-24 months and should alleviate investor concerns of overreliance on [Call of Duty] and [World of Warcraft]."

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